|Gina Lollobrigida wearing the Bulgari diamond necklace and bracelet combination as a tiara & the pair of emerald and diamond earclips. The items are included in the auction at Sotheby's Geneva.|
Actress and sex symbol, Gina Lollobrigida, will sell 23 jewels from her Bulgari collection at Sotheby’s Geneva Magnificent Jewels and Noble Jewels Sale on May 14. The auction will feature important Bulgari jewels from the 1950s and 1960s, worn by Lollobrigida at landmark moments in her career. Proceeds from the sale will benefit stem cell research.
Key pieces from the collection will travel to Hong Kong, London, New York and Rome before returning for exhibition in Geneva in advance of the sale.
“I have been lucky enough to be given many roles in life – as an actor, a mother, a photojournalist, an ambassador for FAO (Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations), and as an artist,” Lollobrigida said. “I began collecting jewels from Bulgari in the 1950s and 1960s, drawn by the wonderful craftsmanship and distinctive style of these pieces. They accompanied me on many journeys—both professional and personal—and are redolent of those times and the extraordinary people I met along the way.”
She continued, “I have decided the time is right to share them with other collectors. In so doing, I can also help a cause very close to my heart, that of stem cell research – treatment, which I believe should be freely available to every child. It is my wish that part of the proceeds from the sale will contribute to help fund an international hospital for stem cell research.”
David Bennett, Sotheby’s Switzerland and jewelry, Europe and Middle East chairman, added: “These exceptional jewels are evocative of both a woman, and an era. Not only do they reflect Gina Lollobrigida’s brilliance, but they are among the finest designs created by Bulgari in the “dolce vita” years of the 1950s and 1960s.”
Highlights from the sale include:
* Diamond necklace and bracelet combination, Bulgari, 1954, (also worn by Miss Lollobrigida as a tiara) a favorite of Lollobrigida on landmark occasions, including receiving her 1961 Golden Globe for World Film Favorite – Female (estimate, $300,000 - $500,000).
* Pair of natural pearl and diamond pendants, Bulgari, 1964, worn by Lollobrigida on numerous public occasions, including to meet Princess Margaret at The Taming of the Shrew premiere in London in 1967 (estimate, $600,000 - $1 million).
* Diamond ring set with a cushion-shaped diamond weighing 19.03 carats, Bulgari, 1962 (estimate, $400,000-800,000).
* Emerald and diamond earclips, Bulgari, 1964. Each earclip suspends a detachable pendant set to the center with a pear-shaped emerald (estimate $150,000 - $250,000).
* Emerald and diamond brooch set to the center with a step-cut emerald weighing 27.57 carats (estimate, $150,000 - $250,000).
* Emerald and diamond ring, Bulgari, 1964, set with a step-cut emerald weighing 16.62 carats, framed by two rows of brilliant-cut diamonds (estimate $120,000 - $180,000).
For her commitment to various humanitarian organizations, she was nominated first Ambassadress for the FAO in 1999 and has worked closely with UNICEF, UNESCO, Médecins Sans Frontières, Mother Theresa of Calcutta and children in Romania.
In 2007, she received the honor from the Republic of San Marino of becoming the only woman to be featured in a special edition of four postal stamps bearing her portrait – each depicting a different facet of her career – as actor, photographer, sculptor and humanitarian. In 2008, in Washington, the Italian-American Foundation NIAF awarded her the “Lifetime Achievement Award” in recognition of her artistic life.
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